He was born at the family home on Nov. 25, 1943, to parents Roy and Ada (Williams) Smith in Hilltonia.
Robin grew up in Georgia. At the age of 15, when he had saved $20, he struck out on his own to seek his fortune. But his $20 only got him as far as Oklahoma. He settled there working several jobs to support his wife and two sons.
Robin learned to fly on the G.I. Bill. After he got his first type rating he flew for Mr. George Steinbrenner. His deep passion for flying led him on numerous adventures including flying for governors David Boren and George Nigh. Robin visited the Oval Office three separate times during different presidencies.
Robin graduated from the 28th Oklahoma Highway Patrol Academy in 1971. The three things he loved most in this life were his wife, JJ, Oklahoma and being a state trooper. He lived in Oklahoma until 1998, when he and JJ moved to Clermont, Fla., where they resided to be near their daughter, Susan.
Robin was assigned to Troop O, Aircraft Division, and retired as an OHP lieutenant and pilot with safety ed in 1991 after 20 passionate years of service. Many times he used his pilot skills to earn extra cash. In his own words, “I’ve not seen any Oklahoma Highway Patrol lieutenants on ‘Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous’ being interviewed by Robin Leach.”
He was propositioned by movie producers in 1985 to do the flying in the movie “Rambo: First Blood Part II,” starring Sylvester Stallone. They asked every pilot on the West Coast but were told over and over that their request was suicidal and no amount of money would be enough; but in Robin’s words it was “a piece of cake for some quick coin and a paid vacation to Acapulco.”
Robin trained John Travolta in the Westwind and flew him around the country helping him promote the opening of his movie “Urban Cowboy.” From spending time at James Cagney’s home to hanging out with Dolly Parton, you never knew where you would see Robin next.
During his lifetime Robin logged well over 30,000 hours in his career, flying virtually every type of aircraft. He was an FAA designated examiner in six different types of private jets, a certified aviation mechanic, and held type ratings to fly 29 different types of aircrafts. His most recent was for hot air balloons, which he obtained with his good buddy Virgil Smith.
Robin is survived by his wife and best friend, JJ, with whom he shared his life since Nov. 11, 1987; daughter, Susan Renee Finley; sons, Scotty Wayne, Robin Don Smith and wives; and daughter Chloe Smith; siblings Ronald (Ronnie) Davis, Glenda Barber, Brenda Barber Taylor and Betty Smith of Woodbine and Kay Smith Gay DeGrilla of Princestown, Trinidad; grandchildren Amber Bain, Samantha Finley, Heather Finley, Carla Brooks, Sara Kamphause and Jack Daniel; as well as great-grandchildren Kort, Kahle, and others; and a host of extended family and friends.
Due to majority of the family living out of town, the family has asked that memorial donations be made to Robin’s favorite charity St. Jude, in lieu of flowers.
Arrangements under the direction of Chapel Hill Funeral Home, Oklahoma City, Okla.